ASUS Eee PC T91 tablet-convertible netbook
The first tablet version of the Eee PC is extremely portable, but frustrating to use
- Good build quality, useful touch interface, very small size, easy to carry
- Touch-screen navigation is inaccurate unless the stylus is used, very small storage capacity, slow
The ASUS Eee PC T91 is the first tablet-convertible netbook to hit the market. While it's not perfect a perfect product, the touch-screen interface gives you another way to launch applications and even to write notes. Ultimately the unit is perhaps too cramped and slow for comfortable tablet usage.
Price$ 799.00 (AUD)
Tablet PCs came out of the closet in record numbers at the recently concluded CES 2010, but Asus has had one out for a while. The Asus Eee PC T91 doubles up as a netbook and low-cost tablet PC with touch input support on its 8.9in screen.
The Eee PC T91 sports an all-black look, overflowing with gloss on the screen lid — and it's a huge fingerprint magnet. Its overall dimensions are smaller than the ASUS Eee PC 1008HA or the ASUS Eee PC 1001HA, tinier than most mainstream netbooks found in the market these days. It is also extremely lightweight, weighing just a shade under 1kg; easy enough to tuck away in a handbag. The Eee PC T91's touch-enabled resistive screen is 8.9in wide, has an LED backlight, and swivels around to nestle upside down on the keyboard to become a tablet PC. No complaints on the unit's build quality; it's nice and solid and doesn't feel cheap in any way. An easy-to-use stylus is tucked away in the right corner of the front edge.
The Eee PC T91's resistive touch screen was a bit of a mixed bag. Navigating your way around was okay with the included stylus: touch-screen accuracy here was good. But when I started using my finger to navigate through the screen, the mouse pointer and my finger-on-the-screen were misaligned: e.g. I put my finger over a window's minimise button only to see the mouse-pointer go hit the close button instead. One had to consciously aim left of the intended target, and it wasn't a great touch-screen experience navigating with the finger.
The touch-tuned interface, however, isn't as bad. App icons are nice and big, typing on the on-screen keyboard is largely easy with the stylus, and handwriting recognition (for the most part) works well. But applications take a while to load, and there's a distinctive lag while interacting with the touch screen — not a party pooper but enough for you to take notice.
Part of the reason for its sluggishness lies with the Eee PC T91's internal hardware, which is very netbook-like. Like the Benq Joybook Lite U121, the Eee PC T91 runs on an Intel Atom Z520 1.3-GHz processor — slower than the newer Pine Trail Intel Atom processors. The Atom Z520 is joined by 1GB of RAM and a paltry 16GB SSD. Asus tries to sweeten the storage deal by bundling in a 16GB card giving you the option of using 20GB online Eee Storage. Apart from the standard offering of a card reader, audio jacks, and VGA-out, the Eee PC T91 has merely two USB 2.0 ports, which is disappointing. It supports Wi-Fi 802.11n and Bluetooth 2.1, but not the faster Gigabit Ethernet standard. It comes with Windows XP Home edition, another reason why it isn't really touch-optimised. For video chatting, there's a 0.3MP webcam recessed on the top screen bezel — and it isn't the best we've seen.
The Eee PC T91's performance was like other Atom Z520-based netbooks we've tested, not better or worse, and the bundled SSD does no favours. Aside from its hit-and-miss touch interface, and despite its smaller form factor, its keyboard and touchpad were quite nice to use: keys were tightly packed (unlike on the MSI Wind U135) and offered very little flex, and the touchpad was very responsive. It couldn't play HD 720p video files smoothly, but we could listen to music and browse the Internet over Wi-Fi without a hitch. Its integrated battery lasted close to five hours (4 hours 48 minutes) while I browsed the Net over Wi-Fi, which isn't too bad.
Asus' experiment with a touch-enabled Eee PC, although commendable, isn't very practical. Granted, the Eee PC T91 is tiny and easy to carry around, but its touch interface isn't quite perfect. Its retail price is $799, but it can be found much cheaper if you shop online, and there is also the newer T91MT for $699, which runs on Windows 7 and is therefore a much better proposition.
Join the newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Google Pixel 5 Review: Soft Reboot
- 2 Google Pixel 4a review: The Goldilocks Google phone
- 3 Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra 5G review: Wrong Number
- 4 LG NANO99 NanoCell 8K TV review: Prestige at a price
- 5 LG Velvet review: Fake it till you make it
Latest News Articles
- Something for everybody in Acer’s new models
- Getac’s next generation V110 is thoroughly tough and well connected
- xCloud game streaming will come to iOS with a browser-based solution
- Huawei launches its all-rounder, the MateBook 14
- Dell updates XPS 13 2-in-1 and XPS 13
PCW Evaluation Team
Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.
This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.
It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.
As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.
The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.
This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.
- Best Australian Amazon Prime Day deals
- Why do gamers like RGB Lights?
- Huawei Matebook X Pro (2020) review: The real deal
- Everything you need to know about Smart TVs
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?